For three years now I've been a part of this soul searching writing and creative project, One Little Word and each year my word has come to shed light on my life in ways I needed, I wanted, I hardly could expect, and maybe at times, was even fearful of. Each year that little word has stuck by my side and leapt at the chance to help me become something greater, a companion on the long journey of scratching the surface of potential.
It always seems to be that these words have not fallen into my lap by happenstance, but are truly placed along my path when I have needed them the most. In years past, these little words have greeted me, searched me out, and found a home in my heart, but that wasn't the case this year, this year it was my turn to choose, to accept it, and to hold onto it for dear life.
This tiny word came up several months ago in an unlikely spot in the follow phrase, "I delight in my own delight." I had so deeply loved the magic behind that little manta, and I sincerely admired the person who had penned the phrase. As the time came closer for me to choose my word, I struggled immensely. Yet it was in letting go of my own personal expectations of what I needed that I found it tucked away in a sentence interwoven in a special place, my patriarchal blessing that I received years ago. I was so unsure if I should choose it, I hardly understood how it would fit into my tangled web of wants and needs on all levels: physical, emotional, spiritual, creative, relationships, and so on. But the more I searched this word, the more I knew that "delight" was mine if I so chose it to be. Isn't that how it works though? Isn't experiencing happiness something we choose?
What does it really mean to have delight, to experience delight? What does that look and feel like to me? These are all questions I'm eagerly looking to seek out answers to in this new year. I know that in order to really experience "delight" I am really going to have to show up, get curious, be present, and be invested in the whole heart of it — whatever that might entail for me.
There are many aspects of "delight" that I want to discover, and take part in. One of the biggest areas for me is making more room, more time, more connection on a creative level to those things that move me, that "delight" me without the worry or the consuming thoughts of "what if's" and the approval of others for my own artistic expression.
Another area of "delight" is one that requires a bit of letting go, letting go of this notion that I should allow my "delight" to be brought down because of events out of my control, because even though terrible things happen in this world, we are not bound to feel guilty when we experience happiness, something I've struggled with so much over the last year, and something I am looking forward to leaving behind.
"We must risk delight. We can do without pleasure,
but not delight. Not enjoyment. We must have
the stubbornness to accept our gladness in the ruthless
furnace of this world." — Jack Gilbert, A Brief For The Defense
I believe we're here on this earth to have joy, to experience exhilaration, to participate in gladness and bliss with all that we have to offer; that to me is delight, and I am ready to have my soul wholly immersed in it.